40 km from Ha Long Bay are a pristine waterfall, craft village, wine cellar and other intriguing sights in Uong Bi Town, Quang Ninh Province.
Discover Lac Xanh waterfall
Suitable for a day trip, the waterfall is a place to get away from the hustle and bustle. It is 40 km from Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO natural heritage site, in northern Quang Ninh Province.
Once you arrive at the parking lot, the waterfall is about 10 minutes by foot.
Swimming is allowed but must be done with caution since there are slippery mossy rocks underfoot. Admission is VND30,000 ($1.3) for adults and VND10,000 ($0.43) for children.
Kayaking in Yen Trung Lake
Yen Trung Lake is about 5 km from the center of Uong Bi Town. This is where fresh air, green pine forests and dragonfruit orchards come together to make for a nice experience. Kayaking costs VND100,000 ($4.3) for a 30-minutes ride.
Enjoy fresh dragon fruits
The dragon fruit season lasts from April to December and so you have plenty of time to visit the orchards by Yen Trung Lake when the fruits are ripe. The dragon fruits have a distinct sweetness and juiciness.
Visit the national monument of Den Cong
Around 6 km from downtown Uong Bi is the temple of Den Cong, which was built over 700 years ago at the place from where the fire signal that started the battle of Bach Dang in 1288 was sent. This was a famous battle in which Vietnam defeated the Mongolian invaders.
General Tran Hung Dao, who led the army to victory in both battles against the Mongolians in 1285 and 1288, was initially struggling to find a location to send the signal to his troops without the enemies knowing. It is said that he eventually got help in his dream when four deities pointed to him a location near a temple. The general followed their advice, leading to the historic victory. After his victory in 1288, he came back to pay respect to the deities and named the temple Den Cong.
In 2000 the temple was recognized as a national historical and cultural relic. Not far from it still remain vestiges of the war.
Watch craftspeople make leaf hats at Nuong craft village
In Nuong village in Truc Lam Yen Tu Cultural Center complex, images of village life during the Tran Dynasty (1225–1400) era are recreated. It has 50 houses in two blocks. Many activities like making of leaf hats, making dragonflies from bamboo and silk weaving allow visitors to see typical cultural items of Vietnam. To make a conical hat, craftsmen take up to half a day or sometimes an entire day depending on the sophistication of the product.
Visit Yen Tu apricot wine cellar
Apricots growing on Yen Tu mountain are distilled by locals for important family events such as weddings and festivals. By soaking the fruits in sugar and white wine, a flavorful drink with a distinct aroma is created. People in Thuong Yen Cong Commune in Uong Bi Town also make several types of drinks from apricots like syrup and juice, and visitors can see how they are made.